A person with a bicycle on the beach at sunset. Bicycle, person, and Haystack Rock all in silhouette.

Experience the Spring Unveiling Arts Festival and Fat Bike Festival this May in Cannon Beach!


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5 Reasons to Hope for Rain on Your Next Visit to Cannon Beach

Oregon natives know that just because rain clouds are in the forecast, that’s no excuse not to enjoy the spectacular beauty and unique attractions of Cannon Beach. To us, rain is not something to be avoided; it’s just a part of what makes this coastal town and its surroundings magical. There are some remarkable Oregon Coast experiences that only a rainy day can offer. If you visit even when the forecast calls for rain, you may discover a new list of reasons to love it here. These are our favorite rainy-day experiences, both outdoors and indoors, in Cannon Beach that may have you hoping for a bit of precipitation on your next visit:

#1 Let Dramatic Skies Blow You Away  

One of the absolute best ways to experience our nearby beaches is on a gray day. That’s right; we just told you to play in the rain. If you don’t, you’ll miss the great storm clouds and dazzling rainbows that only appear on those gloomy days. And if you’ve never seen the sun break through the clouds in Cannon Beach on a stormy day, you may be missing one of the most spectacular displays. Additionally, stormy weather often means big waves that thunder against near-shore rocks and churn into swirling foam as they crash onto the shore. (Please use caution and common sense when visiting our beaches, as conditions can change quickly and without warning, especially on stormy days.)

#2 The Rainforest is Perfect for a Rainy Day

Cannon Beach’s forests are like something out of a fairy tale; if you’ve only explored them on dry, sunny days, you may be missing the point. The beauty of a fine rain slowly filtering through towering evergreens and into the lush undergrowth is an experience that shouldn’t be missed. Streams swell with rainwater, tumbling through rocky creek beds and over glistening rocks in dozens of little waterfalls. Water droplets give off prismatic light on every surface, from the dangling tree mosses to the dense, curling sword ferns covering the forest floor. During sun breaks, the light bursts through the mist in perfect sunbeams through the trees, illuminating every shade of green you could imagine. And the evocative smell of fresh rain and damp earth beckons you in from the moment you step onto the trail under the protective cover of the trees. They don’t call them rainforests because they exist in a dry climate. You’ll find miles of trails through stunning forests in Ecola State Park at the north end of town and Oswald West State Park, about 10 minutes south of Cannon Beach.

#3 Tour the Oregon Coast’s Best Art Galleries

Believe it or not, now and then, even we locals like to get indoors on the wettest of days. One of the best ways to pass the time during a heavy shower is by stepping into some of our fantastic art galleries. Possibly the warmest spot in midtown, Icefire Gallery always keeps the fire going to shape molten glass into shimmering works of art that seem to emit a light all their own. Downtown, award-winning paintings at Jeffrey Hull Gallery invite you into otherworldly Oregon Coast landscapes where the weather in the images may be more stormy than the weather you left outside. In other galleries, you’ll find stunning bronze animals inviting you to frolic alongside them, eclectic sculptures that inspire the imagination, and print work featuring towering trees and curling waves. Step inside, and you’ll soon see why we’re known as one of the Top Art Towns in America.

#4 Dive into Our Local Shopping Scene  

Packed within a few blocks in our compact town, you’ll find some of the most exceptional shopping opportunities on the Oregon Coast. Upscale cottage décor warms up two stories of shopping bliss at Sesame + Lilies, and classic, contemporary literary works line the walls of the browsers’ haven that is Cannon Beach Book Company, and delectable saltwater taffy and handmade sweets from fourth-generation candy makers overflow colorful displays at Bruce’s Candy Kitchen. And if you didn’t make it to Cannon Beach with your rain gear, you’ll find layers of warmth in shops around town, including puffy coats, vests, and rugged, waterproof layers at Cleanline Surf; designer rain jackets and boots in (quite literally!) a rainbow of colors at Rachelle M. Rustic House of Fashion; and high fashion sweaters, scarves and coats at B. Boutique and Dena’s Shop on the Corner.

#5 Warm Up with a Taste of Our Culinary Culture

Step inside several spots around town, and you’ll find some delicious ways to warm yourself up from the inside out. A toasty cup of perfectly crafted java is the quintessential Northwest way to warm up on a chilly day, and Cannon Beach has several shops that elevate coffee in a fun and frothy ways. Check out Sea Level Bakery if you find yourself at the south end of town, local coffee roaster and Cannon Beach institution Sleepy Monk Coffee if you’re in midtown, or art-filled Insomnia Coffee downtown. Suppose you want to warm up via some of the Oregon Coast’s best chowders. In that case, you’ll find it brimming in toasty bread bowls at local favorites like The Driftwood Restaurant & Lounge or Ecola Seafoods, as well as in spots like Seasons Café, where their take on chowder is a little less traditional (but every bit as tasty!). You’ll find other bowls of warmth, including a rotating soup du jour that might tempt you away from your chowder craving. You can also warm up courtesy of decadent hot chocolate at Cannon Beach Chocolate Café or a remarkable selection of whiskey flights at MacGregor’s Whiskey Bar.

Pro Tip from the Locals

As locals, we know that to enjoy everything a rainy day in Cannon Beach truly offers; you’ll need the proper clothing. Fortunately, breakthrough technology will allow you to get out and enjoy our beautiful area in any weather: a raincoat. Add waterproof footwear and rain pants, and you’ll be prepared to enjoy anything Mother Nature delivers. Don’t let a little rain prevent you from enjoying all the scenic beauty of a stormy day in Cannon Beach!